With no doubt, this tiny Desktop Guitar will take you out of your roof whenever you hear the sound. It gives by someone that is making use of it in your environment. You will want to go get yours.,even if you are yet to get yours.
Spark Amp Review
Compact, good-looking design. Easy-to-use app. Dozens of great amps and pedals modeled. A vast number of user-created sounds to explore. Acts as a Bluetooth speaker at the same time as an amp for playing along.
Tons of great practice tools. Built-in tuner. Works as a USB interface for guitar recording and comes with Studio One Prime software.
No battery for portable performances. No direct outputs for plugging into a PA system. The product is extremely amazing.
Every music teacher I’ve ever had has given me similar advice: Try to buy an instrument that aesthetically inspires you to play more often. For me, that’s a guitar. Unfortunately, for anyone with a small living space (or co-inhabitants with functional eardrums), achieving an inspiring guitar tone at low volumes has been tough.
Tiny amps have long been garbage. You’d slip on the perfect Led Zeppelin T-shirt and distressed jeans, pretend the crowd was chanting your name, plug in your guitar, and out would come thin muddy sound. Blech.
But through the magic of modern digital signal processing, as well as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth upgrades in small speakers, shoebox-sized amps like the new Positive Grid Spark are changing things for the better.
ALSO SEE: Monoprice Hybrid Tube AMP Review
With the Spark, you can easily approximate any of your favorite players, even in that cramped Harry Potter bedroom under the stairs.
What’s more, a quality set of built-in practicing tools can help you write new songs or decode your favorite music, after you’re done picking the perfect tone.
If you’re after an affordable practice solution that also works for recording (and as a Bluetooth speaker), I highly recommend you check out this amp.
A Perfect Size for All
The Spark, like the excellent Yamaha THR30 II I reviewed a few months ago, is truly an all-in-one unit. Apart from an instrument cable, guitar, and smartphone, there is nothing else required to get nearly unlimited guitar tones right out of the box.
It’s got a built-in tuner, dozens of onboard pedal and amp simulations, and even a massive library of user-created sounds online, should you want to browse. You can even save up to four presets if you like to keep your staple tones handy.
Each of the 40 digital pedals and 30 amps Positive Grid modeled bears a striking resemblance to beloved tube amps and stompboxes in the physical universe.
You can simulate Vox, Fender, Marshall, and other famed amp tones easily, and the built-in overdrive, delay, and reverb effects sound like pedals you may recognize from Boss and the like (they even look similar in the Spark’s app interface).
If you’ve been playing guitar for some time and have a relatively standard setup, you’ll be able to set up an all-digital version of your usual rig.
You could typically plug your Burtone Telemaster into an old Blackface Fender Bassman, via overdrive, tremolo, delay, and reverb pedals.
That’s what is mocked up in the Spark app, and it took virtually no time. With a very little tweaking, pretty close to “real” sound in about 10 minutes.
And it sounds pretty great! The 4-inch speakers and 40-watt Class D amp don’t get nearly as loud as the real, tube-driven thing, but the speakers do well to model the various speakers inside classic amps; the closed-back design helps retain the punchy low end too.
Ideas That Spark
The downside here is that the Spark has no battery, losing the portability feature of the more expensive Yamaha THR models. It’s still extremely easy to move around with you (the built-in strap is a nice touch), and there’s a very long power cable to help in your hunt for an outlet.
Considering the price, its build quality is very impressive. The black Tolex and gold-trimmed grill cover look and feel great, and I love the red logo on the front—it looks a bit more like a traditional amp than the Yamaha.
One thing both the Yamaha and the Spark have in common is a USB output. The Spark works as its audio interface for guitars if you plug it into your laptop, so recording quick demos is an absolute breeze. It even comes with a lightweight version of Presonus’ Studio One, which happens to be a favourite recording software at the moment, thanks to its simple drag-and-drop interface.
Like the Yamaha amps, the Spark can act as a Bluetooth speaker while you’re also playing an instrument through it, which is awesome when you’re trying to jam along with tracks or are repeating tougher passages. Unlike on the Yamaha, however, that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to practice aids Positive Grid includes.
Open the app and you’ll discover a myriad of awesome tools for those who are learning guitar, like YouTube-based play-along videos with onscreen chords, and the ability to listen to and transcribe your guitar parts (and add a rhythm below them!) for practicing.
Use the app to play along with various backing tracks, especially since there’s a tiny independent volume control for Bluetooth audio. It makes balancing it with a guitar super easy. There’s even a headphone jack should you need to practice in total silence.
All these, combined with the massive number of tones available in the tone library, means there’s no style of a guitar the Spark can’t help you work on in some way. It practically begs you to try things you otherwise wouldn’t.
Igniting Good Habits
One of the biggest barriers to effective practicing is that people are playing with uninspired sounds in a vacuum. The Spark does well to solve that problem with quality backing tracks and some of the widest tonal variety you’ll find in a single amp.
Where I’d consider taking the Yamaha, with its wireless capability and direct outputs, on the post-Covid road, the Spark is a desktop amp that’s best suited for home use. For less than $300, you can practice, record, and be inspired, from the smallest bedrooms to the biggest. If you don’t already have a practice amp, save the money you’d spend on a couple of pedals and buy one of these—you won’t regret it.
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